Most of us have saris that are too old to be used, but too precious to be thrown away. However, with Sankranti and the ongoing wedding season, you can revive and reuse these saris in many new and fashionable ways.
While using old saris as a dupatta is a known and used way of revamping, there are several other attires that can be made using the six-metre-long fabric. “Sew them into modern silhouettes, like crop tops, skirts and palazzos and team them with staples that are contemporary,” explains celebrity designer Payal Khandwala. “Making a palazzo or skirt out of a sari will infuse the traditional textile with a little bit of modernity and make the ensemble seem less dated. You can do the same with a dupatta,” she says, adding that one can also make jackets and kurtis out of old saris.
City-based fashion designer Shravan opines that saris would make for great dhotis. “Dhotis are in trend now, and what they require gher. The more the gher, the better. One can also make beautiful lehengas out of saris, which when teamed up with a plain blouse and sheer dupatta, will look regal,” he says.
Saying that men can use old saris too, he says, “Printed silk shervanis and safas (the turban tied in weddings) are back in vogue. A benarasi or pattu can be made into a shervani. It can be tied as a safa too and would give the groom a royal look.”
Talking about the colour combinations that work best with these dresses/lehengas/skirts, Shravan says, “Use neutral colours like off-white, black or beige. Old saris are generally bright and blingy, and these colours would help mute that effect. At the same time, they won’t take away from their grandeur.”
Many times, old saris start tearing apart, making it difficult to stitch them. Designer Gaurang Shah explains that the body of such saris shouldn’t be used to make anything. “You can make a dupatta, but even that might start tearing after some time. So it’s best to use only the borders with another cloth. An A-line dress or skirt made of a silk sari would look classy if paired with a black or white shirt. You can alternatively use the pallu of these saris or the borders to make the blouse for another sari. You can then pair these blouses with a sari that has less work,” he suggests.
Apart from heavy silks and cottons, many also own scores of georgette and chiffon saris. Designer Amit Aggarwal opines that one can create colourful capes, cropped jackets and breezy kimonos from old chiffon and georgette saris.